Ascension Lutheran Church

Calgary, AB

Second Sunday after Epiphany

John 1:29-42

[29] The next day he saw Jesus coming toward him and declared, “Here is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! [30] This is he of whom I said, ‘After me comes a man who ranks ahead of me because he was before me.’ [31] I myself did not know him; but I came baptizing with water for this reason, that he might be revealed to Israel.” [32] And John testified, “I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it remained on him. [33] I myself did not know him, but the one who sent me to baptize with water said to me, ‘He on whom you see the Spirit descend and remain is the one who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ [34] And I myself have seen and have testified that this is the Son of God.”
[35] The next day John again was standing with two of his disciples, [36] and as he watched Jesus walk by, he exclaimed, “Look, here is the Lamb of God!” [37] The two disciples heard him say this, and they followed Jesus. [38] When Jesus turned and saw them following, he said to them, “What are you looking for?” They said to him, “Rabbi” (which translated means Teacher), “where are you staying?” [39] He said to them, “Come and see.” They came and saw where he was staying, and they remained with him that day. It was about four o’clock in the afternoon. [40] One of the two who heard John speak and followed him was Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother. [41] He first found his brother Simon and said to him, “We have found the Messiah” (which is translated Anointed). [42] He brought Simon to Jesus, who looked at him and said, “You are Simon son of John. You are to be called Cephas” (which is translated Peter).

In some circles, evangelism has come to mean a process by which people are argued, convinced or cajoled into faith in Jesus Christ—which then means many Christians are hesitant because they don’t think they know enough of the necessary arguments or answers. But what we see in this gospel passage is really quite different.

Neither John the Baptist, nor Andrew engage in anything resembling arguing or debating about faith. Rather they simply say what they themselves know and have experienced regarding Jesus. John, based on what was revealed to him by God and what he saw declares with confidence “Here is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world”, and “I myself have seen and have testified that this is the Son of God.” Andrew, having heard John the Baptist’s statement, and spent time with Jesus himself goes to get his brother Simon Peter in order to introduce him to Jesus, saying “We have found the Messiah”.

Evangelism is really just about pointing people to Jesus and telling them what we have known and experienced for ourselves, in our own words or actions—and then letting Jesus and the Holy Spirit do the rest.